Gilmour Doing Their Thing On Stage
David Gilmour’s team of engineers are self-confessed traditionalists. But because of the type of venues being played on his current On an Island tour, and his extensive list of backline equipment, DiGiCo D5 Lives quickly became the obvious choice. And the Gilmour team are more than happy with the results.
Front of house engineer Colin Norfield had originally wanted his system to be completely analogue. “I’d wanted to go back to basics,” he explains. “But every day David would come in and want to add things and I very quickly ran out of channels on the desk I was using. I realised I needed a digital board, so I decided on the D5.
Colin Norfield – Gilmour FOH engineer
“We’re currently running 56 inputs, but if David wants to do a certain thing then there can be more, which is the beauty of the D5. Today [at the Heinkeken Music Hall] he’s added a new song and now it’s in there.” Norfield is using outboard reverb for Gilmour’s vocal is simply because of his initial use of analogue equipment. “There are a couple of songs where I’ve started to use the onboard compression,” he says. “I’ve been a bit limited on time, otherwise I would have also dumped the outboard gates and compressors. “The D5 is great. It has so many facilities and it’s very user friendly, which is really good for me. I used it in Germany last year, but I’ve learnt more about it on this tour because I’m applying myself more to it.”
The stage from D5 console
Production manager Roger Searle knows how important the footprint of a mixing console can be and the previously mentioned backline setup was at the forefront of his mind when equipment was being specified. “Minimalist was good at monitors,” he smiles. “And the same at FOH. We’re playing mainly theatres, so unless you want to take the complete back row out, you have to be a bit sensible. The D5 fits the bill both in its ability to do the job it’s designed for and in the footprint it takes up. It’s very user friendly for all of us.” Monitor engineer John Roden concurs. “I went for the D5 because of lack of space in the different venues we were playing. This and the amount of inputs we have meant it made sense to have the D5. All my effects are onboard as well.
John Roden – Gilmour Monitors
“The benefits of the desk are obvious from a production point of view and in terms of operation, it’s all there. I can pull anything up in front of me and I’m using a lot of the tools you can do with digital such as the pre-set EQs. I think the D5 is a great piece of kit: it’s ergonomic; it’s easy to use; and it’s small. And the sound quality is a lot better than many analogue desks.”